Profile For Tater

Tater's Info

  • Location:
    WV

  • Driving Status:
    In CDL School

  • Social Link:

  • Joined Us:
    4 years, 8 months ago

Tater's Bio

Im a bluegrass pickin, woodworking father of one great kid living in WV and still trying to figure out this thing called life!! Currently I am enrolled in Knight Transportation Squire CDL training program. Cant wait to see what the future holds for me and this new adventure!!

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Posted:  4 years, 7 months ago

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The big day has arrived...

Keep us posted on your progress and good luck!!

Posted:  4 years, 7 months ago

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Pre trip at Celedon

Knight in Indy gave a handout on the pretrip as well. It was also Indiana state specific or at least we were told as much. We were also told to learn it word for word. No adlibbing, no changing it around. I later found out from several students who PASSED that thats not true. What you DO have to do is hit at least two "descriptors" for each item. In other words say you're talking about the alternator. You should provide at least two descriptors like "properly mounted and secured" and "wires not cut damaged or frayed" "belt tension no more than 3/4in." You get the idea. Just make sure you know what to point out and how to describe it. The order you do it does not matter, the adjectives or descriptors you use, does not matter. One thing that will help is you are there looking right at the truck so if you just look and talk about what you see, that will help guide you. I mean the dipstick, the alternator, the gearbox pitman arm etc etc are all right there staring back at you. If it it mounted, say it should be tight. If it has liquid in it, say it should have no leaks, it it can crack or break say its not cracked damaged or leaking. Just look around. You have time, use it.

Tater

Posted:  4 years, 7 months ago

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Celadon Week Five Laredo Texas March 2015

Pepper, hang in there sounds like you are right there in the edge. It will click!! I also grind when downshifting and it irritates me to death. I mean I have drove everything BUT a semi and thought I would get it but nope!! I talked to alot of seasoned drivers and they all say the same thing. No one starts out shifting smoothly right away!! I admire your stick-to-it-ness!!

Tater

Posted:  4 years, 7 months ago

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First week cdl school done

Just finished up the first week of CDL school at TDI in Milton, fl.

Have my permit and we started doing straight line backing on Friday. Next week, we should start on alley docking and learning shifting as well. Might even be able to hit the road.

Looking forward to passing and getting my license and then being able to get to working again.

If I may, how much is the tuition and do they offer any assistance?

Posted:  4 years, 7 months ago

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CDL Training with Knight Transportation

Wednesday Day 3 - So this day started out with a shock. I was told I could temporaily change my license to Indiana, do my training here and test for the CDL here. Then I only needed to visit a West Virginia DMV and have my Indiana CDL transferred to a WV CDL. Okayyyyyyy. What they didnt tell me at least at first was that I need to take an Indiana state driving written exam. Not the CDL but the standard driving test. THEN I also had to take Gen Knowledge, Air Brakes and Combo ALL OVER AGAIN!! My WV cdl permit was NOT transferable. WHAT?? Why the hell did I NEED to get my WV permit BEFORE coming to class if it does me NO good whatsoever?? I was, well..........****ED OFF!! After calming down I went to the DMV and of course I FAILED the Indiana state exam......Gggrrrrrrr. So back to the training pad and more offset backing practice. After lunch however yet another trainer asked me if I wanted to get some driving practice in. I was only too eager to do this!! So just the two of us went to another section of the huge parking lot and he began showing me shifting, double clutching and how to listen to the RPM's. Upshifting, no problem. Dowhshifting Whoa boy!! That one got me at first. I still was grinding a bit but I was shifting. So out on the road we went. I was driving a big rig for the first time!! WHOO HOO!!!! Wednesday ended on a good note!!

Thursday Day 4 - So today I went back to DMV and took the darn Indiana state written test again. PASSED!! Yeah!! So I went on to the Gen Knowledge Test.......Failed...........Dammit!! So I was on my way back to the training site when I got a call I was not expecting. This is going to seem sudden but in a swift turn of events I ended up driving home. Yes I went back home. I have something going on here that required my attention and there was nothing I could do about it. So I called my recruiter (Before I left Indy of course) and told her what was going on and she said it was not a problem, if I needed to be home then return next week I could absolutely do that. Whew!! What a whirlwind week this has been.

All I can tell you right now is I am waiting for some news that will determine what I do as far as returning to training or not. I know, crazy right? Hang with me folks I will fill you all in as soon as I can. It will all make sense!!

Tater

Posted:  4 years, 7 months ago

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CDL Training with Knight Transportation

Tuesday Day 2 - So today we went right into pretrip practice again. It was ALOT colder this morning and I did not dress for it. I thought I was going to freeze my nads off! After about an hour of pretrip practice we were back in the truck doing more straight line backing. My trainer said I was ready to try offset backing and I was up to the task. So he explained the best he could and I gave it a shot. Well I got it in there but it was NOT pretty!! I mean it took some finagling and I used two pullups before I was successful. I kept at it though and it got a little easier. Still not super confident but better. The other two guys needed to practice more straight line backing and so they did that for about an hour and a half while I stood there freezing again watching them. When I finally got back in the truck I tried another offset and failed miserably at it. The lead instructor saw this and came over. He asked me how I was doing and I said that I WAS doing good but not so much now. He assured me I just needed a couple pointers and he got it. Now then, this guy explained things TOTALLY different than the other trainer and using his methods I was able to throw that trailer in there first shot with NO pull up!! Fantastic I thought!! I was really happy and did it a couple more times for a total of 5 tries. Three of the five I used a pull up, the other two I did not need one!! The rest of the day was spent watching the other two in my group do more straight line.....sigh...The trainers told me they were probably going to move me up tomorrow so I could practice with the two week students. Cool.

So thats the end of day two, more tomorrow!!

Posted:  4 years, 7 months ago

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CDL Training with Knight Transportation

So I have been ROTTEN at keeping this updated. So darn busy I just didnt seem to find the time. Its been a hell of a week and lots of things have transpired so Ill get right into it.

Got to Indy on Sunday, checked into the hotel (nasty hotel)wtf.gif and decided to check out the Indianapolis Speedway since I was only 5 miles away. Turned out to be a good decision and I had a great time!!

Monday Day 1- Got to the training site and they divided us off into groups by how long we have been here so I was grouped with the only other two new arrivals. It was just the three of us in my group. Great!! We watched a few more movies on human trafficking, driving while drunk and some other safety things then got into the pre-trip inspection list. This was a three page list they gave us and said "learn it word for word, do not add your own spin and do not ad lib". Oooookay then!!

We were told we probably wouldnt be in a truck till late Tues or Wed morning maybe. I was disappointed to hear that. We worked on pretrip and a couple other things until lunch which was at 11:30 to 12:30 a full hour. When we returned one of the instructors asked me if I have ever driven a truck, I replied not a semi no and he said "well lets go then!" No better time than the present right? We got in and after showing me a couple pertinent things I fired that mutha up! He said I was going to do a straight line back first. He explained the ball room dancing method of turning your head to look at your mirrors. It was left mirror 1,2,3 right mirror 1,2,3 and so on. The idea being you are constantly watching both mirrors and not depending on just one side. Well this clicked with me and I had no trouble at all backing up about 300 ft in a perfect straight line. I did have experience with trailers so this wasnt a new concept to me just longer.

The other two guys in my group werent so quick and I spent the better part of the afternoon watching them kill orange cones. This got really boring really fast. About an hour later a new trainer showed up and my trainer left my group and the new guy took over. Didnt care for that, I would have preferred to have stayed with one but not my choice soooooo....

That was the end of day one. So far so good actually and I was really impressed with the knowledge and professionalism of the instructors. These guys are REAL drivers. They dont just play one on TV!

The other groups all went about their business practicing, parallel, offset and 90 deg alley dock. More tomorrow!!

Posted:  4 years, 7 months ago

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Starting on at SRT

Good luck Barbara and keep us posted on your progress!!

Tater

Posted:  4 years, 7 months ago

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Celadon and Osborn Transportation CDL Refresher course

Thanks for the review , I was looking for a refresher course at this company or kllm. I heard that Prime doesn't have athank-you.gifthank-you.gif truck for you unless you lease one, I'm still researching.

Check out Knight Transportation, they have a refresher course. I just went through orientation with 5 guys who were in it. They will all get a trainer for a min of 4 weeks and more if they need it. They make $400/week flat rate while in training no matter the miles or breakdowns etc. Then you will be issued your own truck and can choose between dry van or refer. Not sure where you live but here is the info for a great recruiter in Ohio.

Jackie Fondriest Knight Transportation Columbus, OH Recruiter Phone: (614)-308-4958 jaclyn.fondriest@knighttrans.com

Hope this helps!!

Tater

Posted:  4 years, 7 months ago

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CDL Training with Knight Transportation

My last night in Ohio for a while. Tomorrow I head to Indy to start Squire training with Knight Transportation. Cant wait to get in a truck and get going man its killing me sitting here all weekend!! Wish me luck!!

Tater

Posted:  4 years, 7 months ago

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How long from submitting application to company training?

I will echo what the others have said. I actually applied to several companies and talked to a recruiter at EACH one before making my decision. Some are faster than others but absolutely call them and ask to speak to a recruiter. They are not always the best at emailing you but most will take a call. At least that was my experience. Get yourself a list of questions together of things that are important to YOU. Then ask the same question of each company you're interested in. That way you can have your own pro and con list. Plus read read read everything you can about them, here and anywhere else. The information here at TT is invaluable. Lots to learn just hanging around here!!

Good luck and let us hear what you decide!!

Tater

Posted:  4 years, 7 months ago

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CDL Training with Knight Transportation

Forgot to mention we did have one guy get sent home for failing the hair follicle drug test. Guys let me tell you. If you have done ANY kind of illegal drugs in the past 3-4 months, YES months, Dont even attempt it. YOU WILL FAIL!! Then you will always have that on your record. Just dont do it. Again, DONT DO IT YOU WILL FAIL!! There is no amount of cleaning or diet or anything that will alter the result of the hair test. NOTHING. This guy said it had been over a month and he still failed.

Tater

Posted:  4 years, 7 months ago

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CDL Training with Knight Transportation

Ok so I forgot to update the first two days of orientation. Im a bad person!! LOL It was just as others have said, physical from hell, death by powerpoint and alot of sitting around talking and bs'ing with the other guys in the class. There were 9 of all all together. Two of us going on to Squire CDL training and the others are just here for orientation and or refresher training. Three guys were actually going to get the next available truck and hit the road. Everyone here seems nice and mostly all positive comments about Knight. The only negative I see is quite a few drivers have been here for several days (some more than a week) trying to get their trucks repaired. Dont know why its taking so long, some of the repairs were minor things, its not like they were getting an overhaul or something. In fact thats a common gripe Ive heard from just about ALL the drivers is the service department is seriously slacking. Now of course I have no first hand knowledge of that ONLY what these guys and gals are telling me. Today is actually Friday and I am officially HIRED!! I got my driver ID and number and also a stack of ppw to take with me. Since I live about 6 hours away and I drove myself here they are keeping me in the hotel here in Columbus for the weekend and Sunday I will drive out to Indy to start Squire CDL training on Monday. Im feeling pretty good about my choice to go with Knight, other than the issues with service Ive heard mostly positive things and the overall feel you get is really good. Some of their policies are great and have the safety of the driver in mind, Knight is changing over to the Sonar system and most all the dry side already has them and about 70% of the refer guys. It wont be long and all the trucks will have them. Really nice system but its kind of like big brother watching over you 24/7. Way more than any Qualcomm thats for sure. Doing a pre-trip is as easy as scanning a small sticker located at all the key points of the truck and entering notes if needed. It can also take pictures of any defects or repairs needed. Its an Android tablet and of course has all the perks that go along with that. (read in Pandora Radio!!) So thats about it until Monday, if anyone has any questions just let me know and Ill try to answer the best I can. Till next time!!

Tater

Posted:  4 years, 7 months ago

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CDL Training with Knight Transportation

Made it here to the hotel in Columbus. Its a Super 8 and fairly clean about what you would expect from a Super 8. Not great but not bad either. I took a short drive just to try and get my bearings. Not much around really. Got a Steak and Shake, couple gas stations and several pizza and sub shops. There may be more on down the road, I didnt go far. There are several of Knights' Volvos in the parking lot, all bobtail. I overheard one guy on the phone yelling something to the effect of "just get ****ing Volvo here and get the ****ing truck fixed so I can get back on the road! He was NOT happy!! LOL I have not heard from my recruiter so I really have no idea what where or when Im supposed to do tomorrow. If I dont hear anything by morning Im just going to head on over to the terminal and see what I can find out. I have a feeling since I was a late arrival I may have been forgotten about. It happens. Thats all I got so far, more as I go along for sure.

Tater

Posted:  4 years, 7 months ago

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CDL Training with Knight Transportation

Well due to some guys dropping out or not showing up Knight called yesterday to tell me they have openings and I can come right away sooooo. I'm Columbus Ohio bound today!!! I'll start tomorrow with orientation. Here we go!!

Posted:  4 years, 7 months ago

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CDL Training with Knight Transportation

Today I got several emails from Knight. A lot of forms to fill out and send back in, also had to send tax return copies from last two years. Got all that done and I'm scheduled to be in Columbus oh on the 16th for orientation. It's finally happening!

Posted:  4 years, 7 months ago

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Trucking Truth CDL Training?

Hey congrats Tater! I'm going to look over that WV state manual and see what's so different about it.

Well see thats the thing that was weird Brett, its worded different even from their OWN manual! Tricky to say the least. Plus I actually had a few questions about passenger buses on my Gen Knowledge test?? Maybe thats normal but it threw me a bit. The High Road Training is right on par with ALL other training material I found anywhere. I took tests on a couple other sites using just High Road for study material and passed with flying colors. Im telling ya, this was just a WV thing!! It is after all WV, wheels turn sloooowwwwwww in WV!!

Tater

Posted:  4 years, 7 months ago

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Trucking Truth CDL Training?

I cant say enough about the great work Brett has done here and the outstanding training provided for FREE!! As a result, I passed my Gen Knowledge, Air Brakes and Combo today!! Got my permit finally!! Could not have done it without High Road Training!!

One bit of advice, I'm in WV and I can say that the wording on our test was COMPLETELY different from the High Road Course here. Definitely read your state manual too, don't rely on any one source. The more you study the better your chances overall. This sounds like a given but its something to really keep in mind. There were entire sections on the WV Gen Knowledge test that I never heard of. I just skipped them and came back at the end. Worked for me!! Thanks Brett and everyone here at Trucking Truth!! Fantastic resource!!'

Tater

Posted:  4 years, 7 months ago

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CDL Training with Knight Transportation

Well its official I am going with Knight Transportation for my CDL training!! Ive been researching all the company sponsored schools and landed with them as being the best fit for me. I just today got my CDL permit!! Yes!! So with that in hand Im ready for orientation in Columbus OH on the 16th of March!! Yep Im all applied and signed up. My recruiter sent me all the final details today so Im ready. Just trying to decide if I want to drive to OH or take them up on the bus ticket. I go to OH for a week then on to Indianapolis for the rest of the schooling. After that I return home here in WV to take the skills test and get my actual CDL. Thats when I will be paired with a trainer and go out for several weeks for the good stuff. I am super duper stoked and ready to roll!! Ive been reading all the entries I can find here about training with Knight and overall they are mostly all positive with the usual couple of negatives thrown in for good measure. To be expected I think. Anyway, thats where Im at and where Im headed!! More to come as this journey unfolds!!

Tater

Posted:  4 years, 8 months ago

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Swift Orientation, Memphis, TN

Damn Im jealous, I would love to be as far along as you are right now. Truth is Im still studying just to take my test to get my learners. Knight says I have to have that first!! Congrats on your success and I wish you many happy and safe miles in your new solo truck!! We want pictures of the new ride though ya hear!!

Tater

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